Plans by the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation to expand the hotel at its Cache Creek Casino Resort are underway.
A Supplemental Notice of Preparation (NOP) of tribal Environmental Report has been filed with the State Clearinghouse and Yolo County by the Capay Valley tribe, which in addition to a restaurant, pool, multipurpose ballroom and more meeting space, proposes the addition of 459 suites to the existing 200-room hotel. The gambling venue and resort opened in 2004 and is located off Highway 16 in Brooks, California. It is situated on land held in trust for the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation by the federal government. The updated hotel would be built on land already developed in an area of the south parking lot of the resort.
The NOP was required due to an error in the initial design plans for the ceiling of the ballroom, which didn’t allow enough height for the installation of needed equipment, according to the 20-page report (pdf). Many options were weighed by the tribe before finally deciding that adding a few feet to the height of the ballroom was the most practical solution. The fix also allows the tribe to add more rooms in the same building without ending up with unusable space. All totaled, the alteration only adds 10 feet to the height of the building.
The report states, “The existing 200 -room hotel has been operating at capacity from the outset of its opening, and particularly on weekends, many guests are unable to extend their visits due to lack of lodging. The Proposed Project would also provide additional amenities related to dining and entertainment that are in demand from existing patrons that are not currently available in the area. Offering the new amenities would enable the facility to remain competitive, as a premier casino/resort in northern California, and continue to provide a sustainable, long -term economic base for the Tribal Government. “
In a phone interview with the Daily News Democrat, Cache Creek spokesman Mike Traum said that the tribe has been considering the hotel expansion for some time and that, “Throughout the entire week we are having to turn potential customers away.” Traum expects that after obtaining all of the necessary approvals, including the environmental examination, construction will begin sometime in early 2017.
Contained in an “initial list of issues,” water resources, transportation, and traffic, as well as affordable housing options and growth were concerns noted by County Administrator Patrick Blacklock in his response letter to the NOP, according to the news agency. The tribe currently has no plans to add gaming space to the venue.
Recently, Governor Jerry Brown’s office announced that it agreed to new casino pacts with three tribes, one being the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation. If ratified, the new deal would require the tribe to make an annual payment of $33 million to the state. The tribe also agreed to a slot cap. Currently, the Cache Creek Casino Resort offers 2,000 slots; the new compact would set the tribal limit at 3,500.